After several weeks of failing to stock new releases from various publishers due to “credit concerns”, it’s not surprising that European video game retailer, GAME, is beginning the process of shutting down stores and shedding jobs. The latest report from GamesIndustry.biz pegs the number of stores shut down today at 277 and the number of jobs eliminated to be upwards of 2,100. The 333 stores not currently scheduled for closure will remain open and accept trade-ins from gamers, according to the same report. Various stories around the ‘net have claimed that as publishers have pulled support from GAME and failed to stock its stores with the latest releases, trade-ins have been the sole source of certain titles (such as Mass Effect 3 and Asura’s Wrath) available at the chain.
The company has also suspended gift cards (including both GAMEWallet funds and Game Reward Cards), and an official at GAME says the suspension of the cards is “a temporary measure”. The company website, game.co.uk, is currently unavailable as well.
GAME is nearly as synonymous with gaming retail in Europe as GameStop is in the USA. Is GAME’s failure the result of a shifting to a digital marketplace, or merely the result of gross mismanagement? Let us know your thoughts below.